Self-Watering Containers – The “Earthtainer” Design

by David Murray

I had not intended to post another item on containers this week but this morning came across a fascinating article about an American design for a self-watering container. Whether we’re trying to be more responsible in our use of water or simply need to be able to leave our plants for a while to look after themselves, self-watering is an enormous advantage.

Amazon ImageDrip systems fed from a water reservoir are one possibility but involve lengths of tubing draped around the place. Some people don’t mind that but others find it too fiddly. Another possibility is the kind of drip bottle illustrated here (Click here or on the picture to buy the screw-on watering spikes through Amazon.co.uk). The difficulty with these is that some people feel that the accumulation of plastic bottles can look rather like litter, and to last several days you need quite large bottles. Having said that many people like this solution.

Ray Newstead’s “Earthtainer” design is certainly worth looking into, especially for tomato growing where regular and large volumes of water are normally involved. The Earthtainer is not available for purchase but if you go to the above link you can download the design details to make your own – although there may need to be some adaptation to allow for different materials being available in the UK. If anyone has done this why not let us know by telling the story in the comments box below.


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